By Rachel Stine, Education Partnerships Manager
When I first sat down with Rebekah Haithcock, Media Coordinator at Burton Magnet Elementary School, and told her about the Magic of Storytelling grant that Disney and ABC-11 were providing so that all 368 students at Burton could select two books to read over spring break and keep, she told me that this was a perfect fit since the teachers and staff are always trying to find ways to get books into the hands of their students. For the next two months Rebekah worked hard to schedule and put all of the logistics in place for the surprise event called, “Spring Into Reading.”
This past Monday, Rebekah’s hard work paid off. All day long when each class came to the media center they found out that they were able to select two new books to read over spring break and keep forever. Why? Because reading is fun and it keeps your brain smart.
Students loved seeing the Disney books with characters that they recognized and of course, Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Big Nate, and Dork Diaries. One student asked me if he could pick out a book to read for his sister. He said she would love one of the princess books. Another student showed me his book, Who is Muhammad Ali? And said, “I can’t wait to read this!”
Two classes had the special opportunity to have a bilingual storytime with Stephanie Lopez from ABC-11 news. The students were all smiles as they got to meet a local reporter. “I watch you on the news!” one girl said.
After selecting their books, the students sat on the carpet showing their books to their friends reading, talking, laughing, smiling. The best word for it is….joy! There was just so much joy in the room.
Thank you Disney and ABC-11 for creating this opportunity. Thank you to Rebekah and the staff at Burton Elementary School for being so easy to work with! And, thank you to the amazing students for your love of reading and learning – enjoy your books!
You can see coverage of Spring Into Reading on ABC-11 here!